The M.A.D. Dad
I call myself the M.A.D. Dad. M.A.D. stands for Martial Arts Direction. I want to help others battle the forces that threaten our peace with lessons that I have been blessed to discover through my experiences in both Martial Arts and Life.
One True Friend
We are bombarded moment to moment by the idea of value. From alarm clock sounding in the morning to start a day to turning off the bedroom light to return to rest, we seek to trade one type of good for another. We judge how much time we need to invest in hygiene. We calculate the best deal on gas. We look to moving to a new city or changing jobs to save or gain better opportunities.
Skill-In Training: Mercy
How often do you find yourself fraying in splintered bits of emotional energy in response to something that may not really meet that emotional output? It is safe to guess that we all have had someone cut us off in traffic or say something harshly to us which we immediately followed with an angry or upset thought, action or deed. Why?
Life throws many competing influences at each of us daily. Decisions are omnipresent. Additionally, value is being assessed at every juncture in our experience. What is more important? What is right? What is wrong? Who is judging my actions? Is anyone paying attention to what I am doing? All of these questions and more flood our cognitive space.
The Power of Name (Part 3)
Have you ever felt like someone is just "lucky." It appears as if everything that they do is charmed. If things would go wrong for everyone else, somehow they seem to defy the odds and just thrive. If you ask someone who is charmed like that how they view life, he or she might say, "I know things will just be ok or work out for the best." It is if they will good things into existence.
The Power of Name (Part Two)
Life has many connections. We connect to people at work, home, in the community and in various organizations. In each place, we form relationships and give value to others. We name them. Much like ourselves, how we name others gives them power or robs them of influence.
The Power of Name (Part One)
Many ancient stories discuss names in great detail. The Holy Bible goes through the lineage of many patriarchs and ascribes merit to each name for deeds or actions. The Iliad talks about family histories and recounts events. Powerful connections are given between name and deed. People called on power in names. Stories in several oral and written histories describe events where divine intervention or calamity occurred by calling on a name.
Isshinryu Karate and Life
A martial artist once trained so hard to craft his body to the point that pain would no longer be felt. The martial artist would kick trees with his shins and strike palms against stones. The martial artist would practicing falling to the point that the pull of gravity slamming the martial artist's body against the ground was barely felt. All of this was done to separate the body from the mind. The goal to numb the mind from the pain or recognition of the pain by the body.
Hesitation is probably one of the more interesting considerations for me. As a martial artist and teacher, it is the first place I examine when discussing the outcome of any event with an individual or audience. In life, the colloquial statement of " opportunity knocks only once" applies to so many situations.
From Stillness to Response
In the last post, I discussed the concept of maintaining stillness and being open to moving to a response instead of a reaction. I maintain that there are three distinct parts to overcoming an adverse event. The first is stillness. The second that we will discuss today is planning.
Life presents us with so many situations that pressure and elicit action. Often, we feel challenged and may range from frustrated to scared/confused by the various requests or demands placed in our respective paths. How do we tackle our fears when action is "demanded."
Laughter and Endearment
Being able to laugh or chuckle is a freedom that often fear to exercise. I think that probably individuals fear that laughter and joy are synonymous with ridicule and fear. In a very questionable social climate with everyone on edge about determining some underlying meaning for every statement (no matter how trivial) , it seems that laughing is not fashionable.
Skill-In Training: Mantra Training
In the movies, the protagonist always faces a challenge. The underlying reason for the movie or "theme" is presented in some climatic sequence. Building to that event, the hero of the movie prepares and often does so with some uplifting song or motivating memory or dialogue/monologue that he or she revisits in a recap that the audience gets to see on the screen.